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We wanted to take a moment to address some of the ugly rumors that have been flying around about Cracked over the last few months, including the so-called Department of Justice investigation into Cracked's operation, and our recent book deal.

Let's take the second one first. Yes, Cracked has signed a deal with the Penguin Group to publish a book next year with never-before-seen articles alongside the most awesome articles ever published on the site.

This probably won't be the cover.

We would talk about what an accomplishment this is for us, but of course that would be ignoring the fact that you guys write the site for us. So, really it's your accomplishment. Good job.

Since we are still putting the book together, this also means if you sign up to write for us you may very well be able to call yourself a published writer by this time next year, since if your article is good enough, we'll throw it in the book. This is important, because it's well known that telling a woman you're a published writer will make her pants shoot off so hard they'll instantly be nothing more than a speck sailing over the horizon.

That's Ernest Hemingway. We don't know who the chick and neither does Ernest Hemingway.

Now for the less pleasant rumor, that the Department of Justice has launched Microsoft-style anti-trust charges against Cracked based on our "utter dominance of all forms of media" and "unconscionable levels of awesomeness".

This is simply not true. These rumors come from the same unreliable source as the rumors that emerged last Spring that the FBI was requiring Dan O'Brien to register his sexiness as a lethal weapon. That is, they come from Dan himself.

Yes, it is true that the site (the one that people like you write for us) is now doing over 75 million pageviews a month, a number that until this summer we didn't actually know was a real number. Yes, it's true that our very own Robert Brockway has his own book up for pre-order right now called Everything Is Going To Kill Everybody. It is equally true that Editor David Wong's horror novel John Dies at the End is coming in hardback in just a few weeks and that a movie that borrows liberally from Dan O'Brien's life* grossed over $90 million at the box office.

*denotes facts currently pending legal action

But have we gotten too big? Just because the Swaim and Gladstone action figures didn't sell as well as Editor in Chief Jack O'Brien had projected? We don't think so. If there's one thing the internet economy has taught us, it's that once you're successful, you pretty much stay successful forever. The citizens of Washington state can protest the orphanage we demolished to build a new server farm until they're blue in the face. Those scrappy parentless bastards can proceed with their plans to put on a fundraising concert to buy back the land, but they'll never raise the money in time. We're on top, we'll always be on top, and we'll never, ever get our comeuppance.

Nothing bad ever happens to anyone!

So if you've ever had a great idea for an article, or you're just a funny person, now might be the time to join us in the online workshop. If you're good, you might end up in our book. If you're as good as Brockway, writing for Cracked might help you get a book deal of your own. And if you're as talented and handsome as Swaim and Gladstone you might even get turned into the least successful action figures since Rocky's Meat. At the very least, you'll have a shot at getting paid to write dick jokes that hundreds of thousands of people read in the hour after we publish them.

But you'll never know if you don't sign up.

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